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California LGBTQ+ Adult Population Health Behaviors and Attitudes on Tobacco

June 2, 2022

Policy Research Report

Author: Sean Tan, MPP

Summary: Research examining health behaviors related to tobacco use among the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) adult population is often lacking. This study, a follow-on survey of the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research’s (CHPR) 2019–2020 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS), collected population-disaggregated data on tobacco use, cessation, secondhand exposure, and attitudes regarding tobacco use and control policies among the LGBTQ+ population. Data from this study is intended to be used to develop or improve tobacco prevention and cessation programs that are working in collaboration with the LGBTQ+ population in California.

Findings: Prevalence of current use (past 30 days) and ever use (lifetime) of e-cigarettes or other vaping products among LGBTQ+ adults is high compared with the general California state and U.S. populations. Reported marijuana use is higher than reported use of any tobacco products among LGBTQ+ adults. LGBTQ+ adults reported higher exposure to tobacco secondhand smoke and secondhand vape than the California adult population. LGBTQ+ adult smokers used non-Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved vaping products more than FDA-approved prescription cessation medications when attempting to quit (46.8% vs. 25.7%). A majority of LGBTQ+ adults agree that tobacco industries target LGBTQ+ communities, and support smoke-and vape-free policies but with strong disagreement for smoke- and vape-free policies at public LGBTQ+ events.​

This report was developed in collaboration with subject matter experts: Jody L. Herman, PhD, MA; Scout, PhD, MA; Bianca D. Wilson, PhD. The report is supported by the California Tobacco Control Program, California Department of Health.​

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